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Quantum Sensors Group

The Quantum Sensors Group, part of NIST’s Physical Measurement Laboratory, and the Quantum Electromagnetics Division, advances the detection of photons and particles in a variety of application areas using superconducting sensors and readout electronics.

The Group focuses on:

  • quantum effects, including superconductivity;
  • low temperatures to reduce thermal noise; and
  • the development of advanced sensors.

Major activities of the Group include:

  • superconducting x-ray and gamma-ray spectrometers for applications that include materials analysis and nuclear materials accounting
  • superconducting microbolometers for applications that include concealed weapons detection and understanding the early universe 
  • advanced cryogenics to aid the dissemination of cryogenic sensors
  • the determination of x-ray fundamental parameters to facilitate materials analysis by x-ray techniques
  • support of U.S. industries that develop or use advanced cryogenics and cryogenic sensors

News and Updates

Projects and Programs

Fabrication

The application of modern micro- and nanofabrication techniques to superconducting and cryogenic electronics is enabling new capabilities and applications.

Novel Devices

Emerging devices such as parametric amplifiers can provide new capabilities for cryogenic sensor systems. The Quantum Sensors Group is studying a range of new

Cryogenics

Low temperatures suppress noise and make quantum phenomena accessible. As a result, cryogenics play a crucial role in precision measurements.

Publications

Hot science with cool sensors

Author(s)
Kelsey M. Morgan
A thin superconducting film in the transition between its superconducting and normal states makes an ultra-sensitive thermometer, capable of measuring the

Approaches to the Optimal Nonlinear Analysis of Microcalorimeter Pulses

Author(s)
Joseph W. Fowler, Christine G. Pappas, Bradley K. Alpert, William B. Doriese, Galen C. O'Neil, Joel N. Ullom, Daniel S. Swetz
We consider how to analyze microcalorimeter pulses for quantities that are nonlinear in the data, while preserving the signal-to-noise advantages of linear

Dependence of transition width on current and critical current in transition-edge sensors

Author(s)
Kelsey M. Morgan, Christine G. Pappas, Douglas A. Bennett, Johnathon D. Gard, James P. Hays-Wehle, Gene C. Hilton, Carl D. Reintsema, Daniel R. Schmidt, Joel N. Ullom, Daniel S. Swetz
If transition-edge sensor (TES) X-ray detectors are to be useful in photon-rich environments,they must maintain high resolving power when pulse durations are

Awards

Ullom wins Boom Award

The Boom Award is named in honor of the emeritus professor from the University of Wisconsin. Dr. Boom's career spanned more than thirty...

2007 APS Fellow - Kent Irwin

The criterion for election is exceptional contributions to the physics enterprise; e.g., outstanding physics research, important...

Contacts

Group Leader